Symposium and agreement between young academies in Sweden and South Korea

Under the theme “Science and Technology for our Society”. A delegation from the Young Academy of Sweden (YAS) visited South Korea and the Young Korean Academy of Science and Technology (Y-KAST). The two academies signed a Memorandum of Understanding to strengthen future cooperation.

1. Anders Hektor, Science and Innovation Counsellor and ambassador Daniel Wolvén at the Embassy of Sweden in Seoul, Korea. 2. Ambassador Daniel Wolvén speaking at the residence during the VIP reception. Photo: Swedish Embassy. 3. Prof. Johan Rockberg at the VIP reception at the Swedish Embassy. Photo: YAS (Click images to enlarge)

The visit was planned in parallel to the Sweden-Korea Nobel Memorial Program 2022 and the members of YAS was welcomed to the Embassy of Sweden in Seoul on November 8 together with the delegations from Lund University, Umeå University and KTH Royal Institute of Technology.

The Ambassador Daniel Wolvén and the Science and Innovation Counsellor at the Swedish embassy in Korea welcomed the delegations and briefed everyone on the relations between Korea and Sweden and what the days ahead would bring.

On November 9 members of YAS took part in the site visit to LG Science park where representatives presented the facilities. After the site visit a high level round table discussion on Quality in Research was organized by the Korean Academy of Science and Technology. YAS members participated in the interdisciplinary discussions on how to evaluate and promote high quality research. The discussions provided great opportunities to learn about the respective research cultures of each country.

1. Study visit to AbClon in Seoul. 2. Jong-Seo Lee, CEO and co-founder of AbClon. 3. Lab visit at AbClon. Photo: YAS (Click images to enlarge)

One of the members of the YAS delegation, Johan Rockberg, is a co-founder of the company AbClon in South Korea. The YAS delegation visited the company on the morning of November 10 and was inspired about how a collaboration between Sweden and Korea going back 20 years, had resulted in a now successful pharmaceutical company with therapeutics in clinical trials helping patients suffering from cancer. The CEO and co-founder of AbClon Jong-Seo Lee, presented the company and the delegation was given a tour of the facilities. This was a great start of the day and an inspiration for the bilateral symposium planned with the aim to spark new ideas and collaborations.

2022 Y-KAST-YAS Bilateral symposium – Science and Technology for our Society

The symposium was held at the Swedish embassy residence and the Chair of Y-KAST, Professor Young Keun Kim together with vice chair Jeong-Yun Sun welcomed YAS to the residence together with counsellor Johannes Andreasson of the Swedish embassy.

1. Hyunjung Yi, Y-KAST. 2. CEO Sverker Lundin and Prof. Young Keun Kim signing Memorandum of Understanding. 3. Prof. Johan Rockberg, CEO Sverker Lundin, Chair Young Keun Kim, and Vice Chair Jeong-Yun Sun celebrating signed Memorandum of Understanding. Photo: Y-KAST/YAS (Click images to enlarge)

After introductory remarks and a round of presentations the symposium started with a signing ceremony of the Memorandum of Understanding that had been prepared to strengthen collaborations between the two academies.

Johan Rockberg and Young Keun Kim commented the seminar for a press release by the Embassy of Sweden as follows:

– The 3rd Bilateral Symposium, which resumed after three years due to COVID-19, has significant meanings to the young scientists. It will be a catalyst for them to build a network and reach full scientific growth. I am also thrilled to announce the recommencement of exchange between YAS and Y-KAST upon the signing of the MoU, said Professor Young Keun KIM, Chair, Y-KAST.

– Research and education are actions with global implications taken today for a better tomorrow. The bilateral exchange between our young academies is incredibly valuable and inspiring. It brings us closer and promotes both understanding and collaboration, says Professor Johan Rockberg, chairperson of research policy for the Young Academy of Sweden.

1. Ellen Bushell, YAS. 2. Dae-Hee Lee, Y-KAST. 3. Alison Gerber, YAS. Photo: Y-KAST/YAS (Click images to enlarge)

The symposium was structured in two parts: Interdisciplinary capacity building and Social Engagement in science and technology. Members of each academy took turns to present their research and connect it to the theme of each session. The symposium also left plenty of room for discussion and learning of how each academy operates.

1. Adel Daoud, YAS. 2. Philippe Tassin, YAS. 3. Johan Rockberg, YAS. Photo: Y-KAST/YAS (Click images to enlarge)

YAS was keen to learn more about Y-KAST’s outreach concept involving both school pupils and politicians which sparked ideas to collaborate, and YAS then shared the recently released “A Beginners Guide to Swedish Academia” to each of the Y-KAST members. The academies are similar in their ambition to reach out to politicians and the young as well as in its ambition in forming a better research system for younger research leaders. A difference in of how the academies are constructed is that YAS has fewer members, but larger representation by the humanities and social sciences, as well as being an independent organisation.

1. Dinner after the symposium. 2. Prof. Sven Lidin, Lund University, Vice-chancellor Sigrbitt Karlsson, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, and President Ook-Joon Woo, KAST. 3. The delegation at the Lotte Tower together with senior program officer Lyunhae Kim. Photo: Y-KAST/YAS. (Click images to enlarge)

1–3. YAS also had the opportunity to see some of Seoul and it's surroundings. Photo: YAS (Click images to enlarge)

Jaehyoung LEE, head of the International Cooperation Division of the Korean Academy of Science and Technology (KAST) as well as Lyunhae Kim, Senior Program Officar at KAST organized the visit and treated the YAS members to a most magnificent welcome to Seoul including a guided tour of the city with excursions to some of the city’s beautiful and interesting venues, both historic and modern. Moreover, the YAS-delegation got to enjoy some very pleasant culinary experiences with their kind guidance.


From Y-KAST: Young, Keun Kim, Jeong-Yun Sun, Jooyoung Park, Hyunjung Yi, Myoungjean Bae, Dae-Hee Lee, Hei Sung Kim. From the Young Academy of Sweden: Johan Rockberg, Ellen Bushell, Adel Daoud, Alison Gerber, Philippe Tassin and Sverker Lundin (CEO).


Y-KAST External link, opens in new window. was formed in 2017 at the initiative of the Korean Academy of Science and Technology with an aim to build a well-organized system that boosts the potential competence of Korean young researchers in the field of science and technology and support the country’s science and technology leaders toward the future. Y-KAST selects young researchers who are excellent science and technology and who are willing to build up a global network through active exchange with young academies worldwide.

The Young Academy of Sweden is beyond grateful and delighted to have been provided the opportunity to visit Y-KAST and look forward to implementing future initiatives together.

Young Academy of Sweden
c/o The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences
Box 50005
SE-104 05 Stockholm

+ 46 (0)8 673 9500

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